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By Reuter: Intelligence, the leader in luxury research and insights in China, LuxePulse is an annual subscription. The Luxury Conversation has been given a preview of the latest LuxePulse: Hospitality quarterly report – here’s a summary of some of the highlights we discovered, with a short excerpt from a few key sections. For much more, including news sources, subscribe to LuxePulse.
The first St. Regis Hong Kong opens
Opening its doors in April 2019, St. Regis Hong Kong is located in Wan Chai. With 112 guest rooms and 17 suites, the Hong Kong-inspired interior design was led by Hong Kong-born interior designer André Fu. The Hong Kong property adds to the nine Mainland China St. Regis hotels. St. Regis Hong Kong also opened their Weibo account in late March.
Hyatt Hotels to double Asia-Pacific presence
Hyatt Hotels plan to double its Asia-Pacific presence by 2023. As of May 2019, Hyatt Hotels have 74 hotels (21,021 rooms) in Greater China. With a pipeline of 27,000 rooms over the next four years, the group will open properties across the country, including Grand Hyatt Hefei and Grand Hyatt Shenzhou, Park Hyatt Shenzhen and Park Hyatt Suzhou, as well as Andaz Shenzhen and Andaz Xiamen.
Winning China’s Millennial Generation with New China Pride
In collaboration with Starwood Capital, Shimao Star Hotels Groups have launched ETHOS, a hotel brand designed for Chinese millennials. New China pride, social nomads and bespoke experiences were some of the guiding principles for the hotel concept. The first ETHOS is set to open in Q4 of 2019 in China and will also expand overseas.
Hyatt x BTG Homeinns unveil UrCove for China
The China-centric upper-midscale brand UrCove has been unveiled by Hyatt Hotels and Chinese hotel company BTG Homeinns. Designed specifically for Chinese travellers, UrCove (Yifei in Chinese) will target middle-class business travellers in gateway cities. The first two properties are set to open in Shanghai and Beijing next year, with subsequent locations in Guangzhou and Shenzhen.
Alipay launches ride-hailing mini program for Chinese tourists
Alipay, the Alibaba-owned mobile payment platform has launched a ride-hailing mini program, allowing users to book rides in around 33 cities in 10 countries worldwide. The mini program can be accessed inside the Alipay app and connects to various ride-hailing platforms, such as Grab in Thailand, Gett in the UK, and Careem in the UAE. The system enables users to interact with maps and drivers in Chinese and pay in Chinese renminbi. The service is expected to be available in over 100 destinations across 20 countries by the end of 2019.
Ctrip’s Instagram style ‘Trip Moments’ exceeds 1 million DAUs
Launched in December, the content platform ‘Trip Moments’ on the Ctrip Chinese-language app reached over 1 million Daily Active Users (DAUs) in May. 70% of those are under 30 years old – the app’s target. The platform enables users to post pictures or video accompanied by a short paragraph.
Hilton celebrates 100 years
The hashtag Hilton100years launched by Hilton’s official Weibo account has been viewed 2,402,000 times. The hotel group offered credit and discount coupons on Weibo as celebratory incentives to its fans. Various Key Opinion Leaders posted about the campaign, which were then reposted by the Hilton official account to widen reach. (image from their 100 years look forward)
Aman’s H5 test to find the most suitable resort
In June, Aman launched an H5 test within WeChat to help identify the Aman resort that best matches one’s preferences. To close the loop, one can then book the most suitable destination as s final step. The post announcing the test has been viewed 6,426 times since posting.
Shangri-La launches WeChat Mini-Program
Shangri-La launched its WeChat Mini-Program and payment services at the start of June 2019. Through the Mini-Program, customers can bind their personal information with their WeChat accounts, as well as manage their loyalty program credits, book rooms and pay for their stay deposit. The post announcing the launch of the Mini-Program has been viewed 16,800 times and has attracted 106 comments.
VogueFilm @ St. Regis Shanghai Jing’an
VogueFilm 2019, an event celebrating the bi-annual publication launched in 2017, was held at the St. Regis Shanghai Jing’an in June. The event was attended by several Chinese celebrities, including supermodel He Sui, actor/singer William Chen, and actress Jing Tian. The Shanghai property posted about the event on its official WeChat account on June 17. The related hashtag has been viewed 1,480,000,000 times and mentioned 2,325,900 times.